Geocaching Experiences – The Hoffman Mansion

Geocaching and exploring have taken us to some spooky locations and sites.  Many of them involve tales of killing, treachery and tragedy.  These are almost always accompanied by stories of ghosts and paranormal activity.  I’m not a guy who is easily spooked, but we have experienced some things in our travels which converted me from skeptic to open minded.  There are definitely things out there that can’t be explained.

One of those places is the Hoffman Mansion, outside of Peoria, OK.  We stumbled upon it while looking for a nearby geocache called… (drum roll)… the Hoffman Mansion.

The haunted Hoffman Mansion
The caretaker's quarters at the Hoffman Mansion. This is the only structure that remains in the compound. Everything else has been demolished but their foundations and outlines are clearly visible.

The history of the place and the tragedy that happened here are well known.  The compound was built in the 1880’s and bought by the Hoffman family at the turn of the century.  In the 1920’s, they ran a camp for boys there.  One night, one of the Hoffman family tortured and murdered five boys who were staying there, then hanged himself.  All were buried in the family cemetery which is on the grounds.  The Hoffman family lived in the mansion until 1960, when it was bought by a family from California.  They lived there for several years, then abruptly packed up and moved, never to return.  The main house and several other structures were condemned and demolished in 1998 after over 30 years of abandonment and neglect.

Nevertheless, there appears to be something present there.  Visitors, passers by and paranormal investigators have reported voices, lights and the sounds of children playing.   Investigators say there is an enormous amount of paranormal energy.  One interesting detail is that there is absolutely no graffiti anywhere on the premises. The taggers don’t go there. 

The compound is posted and fenced.  We, however, ventured into the grounds via an open gate.  At least I did.  The geowife didn’t want any part of it.  I walked around for about a half hour.  It must have been quite a place.  There were two large concrete aprons with shredded tennis nets and rusty basketball hoops along with several large foundations, one of which looked like a swimming pool.  Normally, I can poke around a place like this for a long time, but after 30 minutes, I’d had enough.  Completely quiet and deathly still,  it was really creepy.  I kept turning around to see if anyone was there. 

More detailed information about life and death at the Hoffman Mansion is hard to come by.  There are no known pictures of the compound when it was intact, which is unusual considering it was occupied for almost a century. The cache is still there, just outside the property line near the cemetery. In addition to spirits, there’s lots of poison ivy, so beware of both.

Good haunting … The Cachemanian Devils

63 thoughts on “Geocaching Experiences – The Hoffman Mansion

  1. Yeah, I’d probably be more afraid of the poison ivy 😉

    But to be more serious, what happened there was terrible. How could such a thing happen, perhaps he/she was mentally unstable?

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  2. I and a few friends have ventured onto this property, i’ve gotten a few photos of orbs one that was really, really creepy. my father keeps telling me its just dust but i’ve never seen dust have color in it that almost looks like a damn smile, while the other three are completely bright white(Of course i was taunting what ever was on the property. Stating that they were not real and would have to prove themselves). Though before i got these photos, Me and a few friends(like 5 of us) had experienced something i couldn’t explain. We where standing in front of the gate looking out towards the one building that’s still intact by the cemetery, seeing what looked like dark figures walking in front of the building in the moonlight. When out of no where behind us we heard this growling. I know it wasn’t my imagination because all of u turned around and looked at the same time. Of course nothing was there, but freaked out all of use quickly got into my car and i turned on my light and the growling just disappeared. We sat there and watched the bushes and surroundings didn’t see no animals or anything but cows off in the way distance. So i couldn’t have been a wild animal. ( I still have these photo’s )

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      1. I hunt across the road and I have a picture of s face on my trail camera. 918 533 1996. Text me and I will send you the photo.

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  3. or posiste? It is indian property. and it is said that sacrifice of innocent souls could open up a portal to another dimension. (if you believe in these things)

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  4. Was down there in 1992 with friends one nite my friend held his hands together and I was able to get a step up to grab one of the balcony rails some roosting birds startled flew out from under the balcony roof shit there and then bout jumped outta my skin but falling was more scary so I held on climbed over the rail onto the floor the balcony door was open bout 3inches I took a breath opened the door and went in at nite alone no lite but moonlite coming in a reflecting off the walls so you could see the carpet pattern. Fairly good the place was empty went to the stairs downstairs to the front door and let my friends in we cheeked it out pretty big place of coarse some of my friends got wormy pretty quick pool out back with fountain in middle of it didn’t really seem damaged to the xtent they tore the mansion down defintly a real experience

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  5. I’ve had several friends and my mother and her friends walk through here and experience scary things. I grew up in quapaw which is also near Hoffman’s Mansion. I always herd different stories about it and never dared to go there. Glad you where able to share your knowledge and experience of Hoffman’s with us.

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  6. One must note, you were trespassing on Federal Trust land when you entered the property. One must also note that most if not all of your information, other than the Hoffman name, is incorrect. The cemetery was recently vandalized. The property is patrolled by BIA officers as well as Quapaw Tribal Marshals.

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    1. Thanks for the comment. I haven’t been there in seven years. There’s not much to go on when writing about the place, so if you have some specific information about it I’d love to get it from you. Too bad about the cemetery. Nothing is safe anymore. Dan

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  7. I grew up with our property next to the Hoffman’s mansion property. Rode our horses near there all the time and down the road running along the property to the back of the mansion and next to it .. During my Jr.high years it was a boys home for awhile. To be honest when going back and seeing the mansion tore down it saddened me . place looks nothing like my childhood memories now .I wish someone who inherited the place would have kept it up.

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  8. That place is spooky as hell it always has been my family live out that way it’s not far from other places just as spooky like spook light little people bridge in fact right up the road from it is a spot that they say there is a large pentagram made of bone of the road than you have devils prominade that you have to cross on the way out to it an they say if you cross the bridge 3 time an stop in the middle ether the deer lady or the devil will show up an before you cross the bridge there is a cemetery that suppost to be haunted I wish I would of took pics before they tore it down know kicking my butt know for failing to do so happy hauntings

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  9. Before they demo’d the ground, they had a haunted house in the mansion. My parents took my siblings and I and it was one of the most terrifying haunted houses I’ve been to. Perhaps it was part of the backstory as well.

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  10. My brother lived there when it was a boys home, in the 80’s. I never did experience anything but I am sure there are those that did.

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  11. I know some of the family. I used to babysit some of the Hoffman children. I even played hide and seek in the mansion before it was demolished. I also swam in the pool you talked about. In my time there as a teenager, I never encountered anything paranormal. Because the mansion was so old, it always felt a little creepy but all I have are fond memories there. I knew it was a boys home for awhile but I don’t recall the story you told of the family member killing the boys. I have also been in the cemetery there on the grounds. I only recall names of Hoffman relatives. It seems as though you have misinformation. While this place is intriguing and historical, it was not a murder scene. Please check your facts.

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    1. I would love to check my facts. The challenge of writing about the place is there isn’t a lot of hard information to be found. In addition to my visit, I talked to some of the locals and looked at newspapers on microfiche at the library. I couldn’t even find a picture of the place. Very strange that there’s nothing out there. If you have some information that would improve the article, I would love to see it. Dan

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  12. Yes there was a pool there at the mansion. I know several of the family members that are still around. When I was younger our church would have picnics there and swim. There was a lot of places that no one was allowed to go. We all stayed in the guest house and no one was allowed in the main house. We used to jump off the roof in to the pool. I have always heard that the SPOOK LIGHT hangs around out there. Happy hunting

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  13. I just accidentally stumbled upon your website, actually a friend of mine posted this to Facebook and since I live so close to Peoria, OK, there are a LOT of wild paranormal things that go on around here… I am the founder of a Paranormal Investigation group, and LOVE the articles I have read on here!! Keep it UP!!!

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  14. That story is full of bologna… I am related to the Hoffmans. The house was built by Alex Beaver (Quapaw) he married Agnes Track (Quapaw) after his death Agnes Track-Beaver married Old man Hoffman. The family has always owned the land. It was leased out to a boy’s home in the 80’s but after the lease was over the family moved back in. The house in the picture was the bunk house not even of the mansion. My aunt Jean Ann Ramsey had the house demolished and pushed into the pool due to people going out and vandalizing the property. And now people have put graffiti all over the headstones in the Beaver-Hoffman family cemetery.

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    1. Thanks for the comment. Hard information about the place is hard to come by. There aren’t even any pictures, which is strange for a place like that. In addition to my visit, I talked to some local people and looked at newspapers on microfiche at the library. If you have knowledge or information about the people who owned it and/or the place itself, I would very much like to get it. I was there seven years ago and the place was free of graffiti. Too bad about the cemetery. Nothing is safe anymore. Dan

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    2. Ginny, I know this is an old post, but am curious about this house. I believe my aunt and uncle used to live here. I’m not sure of my aunt’s maiden name but believe it was Quapaw. She was full-blood Quapaw. She had two boys, Charles and Louis Ballard, before she married my uncle, David Peery, The time frame I remember was probably early fifties because when she passed away we were there for a wake and then a feast. Am I correct?

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  15. My family has a photo of the house in all it’s glory. When I was little, a local photographer took a photo of me in front of the house. The house was beautiful. I attended a Haunted house that had been created in the mansion itself just before it was demolished. Best Haunted House I had been to.

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    1. Thanks for the comment, If you have a picture of the house, I would really like to get a copy. I haven’t been able to find one anywhere. You can email it to me or just send it regular mail. If you’re willing to do that, please email me or leave another comment here. Thanks. Dan

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  16. I grew up out there, and remember seeing it when I was a kid. Very weird there isn’t pictures anywhere – I remember it quite well. It would have been pretty amazing in it’s heyday!

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  17. Your story is incorrect, my husband lived on Hofffeman masion in the 1970’s and Hofffeman ‘s lived there up until the 1990’s .and the story about some one dying in the house was a sister, there are several people around have pic if tge mansion and can tell you stories , its was a scarey place but there is more to this story the pic of the ground keepers house is where my husbands family lived my father in law worked for Hoffmans.

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  18. This is crazy…. Some friends and I drove past there one time before it was demolished. There was lights on the second story. There were people there too, a bunch of teenage boys. We freaked out because one jumped off of the second floor balcony and they all came towards our car. They invited us to a Halloween party the next week. Needless to say we didn’t go, wish we would have now though. This was back in 96 or 97.

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  19. Seen a ghost there years ago while house was still standing. We were kids parking on the road when a white shape appeared on the upper balcony. There was no electricity on at that time due to being empty.

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  20. I actually knew the Hoffman family and have stayed the night out there before in the guest house. I have swim in the pool and even all of us kids ventured off into the big house as my dad said not to and so did Charlie because they said it was unstable. I seen the graves and have been out to that property many times growing up. I have not been out there since I was a kid.

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  21. I have a picture to give you of the Hoffman mansion, also it was not a family member that killed someone it was a worker .. the pic you have posted is of the house of to the side of the mansion for workers

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  22. In ’65 I was out here with some other guys in a friends car. There were two shots fired at us from someone in the house. My friends car had a bullet hole in the front fender just in front of the drivers side door. We learned the next day that someone had called the Ottawa County sheriff in Miami and said that he was going to kill some kids that night.

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  23. It is hard for me to believe this old (Hoffman Mansion) historic home was demolished without a photo of it anywhere to be found! Unbelievable!

    As a kid back in the 60’s, I toured the home and grounds of this beautiful old estate with an in-ground swimming pool directly out the back door of the home and very nice horse stalls/barns with sliding metal stall doors. This home should have never been demolished and should have been bought and restored by State of Oklahoma and put on the register of the Oklahoma Historical society with all its history. What a shame people find no value in things like this. I would hope someone, anyone, would research and find previous owners and obtain pictures for posting on-line for old timers to see and re-live those years. I would also hope some local artist there who knew of this home would begin painting the home – and make it a part of this web-site. I remember what this old home looked like and be happy to sit down with someone and sketch out what I remember in hopes a nice portrait could be made of this fine old home.

    Bill Fogleman
    Edmond, OK (formerly of Picher/Commerce, OK)

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  24. There are certainly some incorrect stories up there. It was a children’s home for a number of years around 1980. The children there were treated horribly. I know, I was one of them. They beat us severely at times, they called themselves Christians but were anything but. Steve, Beth, Kent and Rodney Hudspeth ran the place as Benjamin Quapaw Children’s Home. I can still remember some of the other kid’s names. I had or may still have some pictures when I returned there once years later….

    Talk about dredging up bad memories…

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  25. I was born and raised in that area and literally lived next door to Hoffman Mansion for a short time while my family renovated our house. My dad was born in Peoria and often talked about Spooklight but NEVER told me anything about Hoffman Mansion. One evening I was walking past there and I got the eeriest feeling and felt quite chilly despite the fact that it was a warm autumnal evening. I always had bad vibes in that area as I had heard stories of the land of the little people, Spooklight, etc. Strange that nobody ever mentioned any killings on the grounds of Hoffman Mansion; check Ottawa County records about that.. Thanks for discussing our corner of the Ozarks, it is really a beautiful yet mystical area.

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  26. I decided to look up all of my childhood areas I would walk with my grandpa. This area, around Devils Hollow, was one of them. I inherited my families property that I grew up on, on spooklight road. We would walk and pick up cans. Walking across Devils promenade, and through the hollow, I always wanted to walk in and see inside the mansion. I finally got to when my then Quapaw school teacher, Mr. Hudspeth opened it for a few tours after it was a boys home. Pretty small on the inside, but beautiful and sparse all the same. No horrid murder stories were told on the showing. Growing up, never heard family say anything like that. My grandparents were raised in the area and their parents, etc. Grandpa worked in the lead-zinc mines. Nothing bad, just a legend to go with the creepy area.

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  27. I have several photos of the Hoffman Mansion at pillars with the balcony above that was taken when my daughter was 1 year old. A newspaper photographer took it for me in a dress specially made by my mother for her 1st birthday in 1983. It was a beautiful place that had just been remodeled after several years of abandon. The cemetery was still there. We walked among the stones to see the dates. Right now I can’t recall any of those dates. I cherish that photo even today. Was saddened when it was turned into a haunted house for a couple of years at Halloween and then was rumored to have been been through a lot of damage by unknowns and eventually demolished. It’s a shame that so many of our historical homes such as that are not taken better care of.

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